Meet the Maker Posted on 14 Jan 11:54

Meet Aillie Anderson one of the five jewellery designer featuring in our latest exhibition 'New Designers'. Aillie discusses how the architecture of cites has inspired her collection and how she plans to become a successful name in the jewellery industry. 

Be sure to pop back every Monday as we shine a light on great ideas and the people behind them. 

What first attracted you to working with Jewellery?

For me it’s always been about the adaptation of ‘art’ into a physical thing, I always loved  drawing and creating in art and design at school and used to make a lot with my mum when I was younger, just little craft projects but I was always a perfectionist and also enjoyed the functionality of creating a physical object. However, it wasn’t until I first visited the GSA degree show when I was about 16 that I really became aware of Silversmithing and Jewellery. I realised that it embodied all these elements and gave me the opportunity for creativity whilst learning a unique technical skill that resulted in a really interesting and wearable piece of work. At the time the opportunity to learn how to work with metal really excited me and still does, I also picked up some visual interests along the way that resulted in the use of different materials as well, now I can’t see myself working in any other way.        

What has been the inspiration for this collection? 

My inspiration has always been tied to the visuals of the built environment and architecture as well as the materials, patterns and details found in these industrial areas. I find the combinations of common materials such as stainless steel, glass and concrete very visually appealing, as well as the angular forms you see in the architecture whilst walking through the city. These inspirations then transcend into the forms and materials found in my work. I also wanted to reinterpret my inspiration into something precious that encourages appreciation from others as well and by using precious metals such as silver as well as jesmonite to create personal adornment I feel my intention is enhanced.

What are your plans for the future?

 My plans for the immediate future are just to continue to grow my business and really get my work out there and hopefully in the future become a successful name in the jewellery industry. I work from my studio at home which right now still requires a few bits of expensive equipment, so another goal for myself is to get my studio fully running with everything id ever need. I am also interested in the possibility of completing another residency after really enjoying mine with GSA last year.

What advice would you give someone who is trying to become a jewellery designer?

 I think all I would say is to be committed and dedicated, although it is a fairly small industry it’s always difficult to start something new. I would say that business advice is necessary and motivates you to get going, whether it be free advice or a course that offers an in depth overview, any and all advice that helps to get you started is a bonus! I also would say to make sure you love what you do, and what you create so that you will always enjoy the process of making new work and new pieces.

Your favourite quote or words of wisdom?

'Not on one strand are all life’s jewels strung’ William Morris

‘Great things are not done by impulse, but a series of small things brought together’ Vincent Van Gogh